Sergeant Stubby

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Sergeant Stubby
Sergeant Stubby.jpg
Sergeant Stubby
Born 1916 or 1917.
Died March 16, 1926 (aged 9–10)[1]
Place of display Smithsonian - "The Price of Freedom" exhibition
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Unit 102nd Infantry, 26th (Yankee) Division
Battles/wars World War I
Awards Humane Education Society Gold Medal
Wound stripe
Other work Hoyas' mascot

Sergeant Stubby (1916 or 1917 – March 16, 1926), has been called the most decorated war dog of World War I and the only dog to be nominated for rank and then promoted to sergeant through combat,[2] a claim for which there is no documentary evidence, but was recognized in connection with an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institution.[2][3][4] He was the official mascot of the 102nd Infantry, assigned to the 26th (Yankee) Division. Stubby served for 18 months and participated in seventeen battles on the Western Front. He saved his regiment from surprise mustard gas attacks, found and comforted the wounded, and once caught a German soldier by the seat of his pants, holding him there until American soldiers found him. Back home his exploits were front page news of every major newspaper.[3][4][5]

Early life[edit]

Stubby was described in contemporaneous news items as a bull terrier or Boston bull terrier.[5][6] Describing him as a dog of "uncertain breed", Ann Bausum wrote that "The brindle-patterned pup probably owed at least some of his parentage to the evolving family of Boston terriers, a breed so new that even its name was in flux. Boston round heads. American bull terriers. Boston bull terriers.[7] Stubby was found wandering the grounds of Yale University campus in New Haven, Connecticut in July 1917 while members of the 102nd Infantry were training. The dog hung around as the men drilled and one soldier, Corporal Robert Conroy, developed a fondness for the dog.[4] When it came time for the outfit to ship out, Conroy hid Stubby on board the troop ship. Upon discovery by Conroy's commanding officer, Stubby saluted him as he had been trained to in camp, and the commanding officer allowed the dog to stay on board.[2]

Military service[edit]

Sergeant Stubby wearing his coat and medals

Stubby served with the 102nd Infantry Regiment in the trenches in France for 18 months and participated in four offensives and 17 battles. He entered combat on February 5, 1918 at Chemin des Dames, north of Soissons, and was under constant fire, day and night for over a month. In April 1918, during a raid to take Schieprey, Stubby was wounded in the foreleg by the retreating Germans throwing hand grenades. He was sent to the rear for convalescence, and as he had done on the front was able to improve morale. When he recovered from his wounds, Stubby returned to the trenches. He ultimately had two wound stripes.[4][8]

After being gassed, Stubby learned to warn his unit of poison gas attacks, located wounded soldiers in no man's land, and — since he could hear the whine of incoming artillery shells before humans could — became very adept at letting his unit know when to duck for cover. He was solely responsible for capturing a German spy in the Argonne. Due to his capture of the enemy spy, the commander of the 102 Infantry nominated Stubby for the rank of sergeant.[2] However, whether Stubby was actually promoted or even an official member of the Army has been disputed.[9] Following the retaking of Château-Thierry by the US, the women of the town made Stubby a chamois coat on which were pinned his many medals. He also helped free a French town from the Germans. He was later injured in the chest and leg by a grenade. At the end of the war, Robert Conroy smuggled Stubby home.[2]

After the war[edit]

After returning home, Stubby became a celebrity and marched in, and normally led many parades across the country. He met Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, and Warren G. Harding.[2] In 1921 General John J. Pershing presented a gold medal from the Humane Education Society to Stubby, which was the subject of a famous photograph.[4][5][8][10] Starting in 1921, he attended Georgetown University Law Center with Conroy, and became the Georgetown Hoyas' team mascot.[10] He would be given the football at halftime and would nudge the ball around the field to the amusement of the fans.[11][12]

Stubby died in his sleep in 1926.[4] After his death, he was preserved with his skin mounted on a plaster cast. Conroy presented Stubby to the Smithsonian in 1956.

Legacy[edit]

Sergeant Stubby's brick at the Liberty Memorial

Stubby received a obituary in the New York Times following his death in 1926. The obituary was half a page, which was much longer than the obituaries of many notable people of the time period.[13]

Stubby was the subject of a portrait by "Capitol artist" Charles Ayer Whipple.[5]

Stubby was featured in the Brave Beasts exhibit at the Legermuseum in Delft, The Netherlands July 18, 2008 - April 13, 2009.[14]

During a ceremony held on Armistice Day in 2006, a brick was placed in the Walk of Honor at the Liberty Memorial in Kansas City to commemorate Sergeant Stubby.[15]

Stubby was the subject of at least four books.[9][16][17][18]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 220. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f ""The Price of Freedom" exhibition". Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "Stubby, World War I Canine Hero 1921". History wired. Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f Kane, Gillian; Larson-Walker, Lisa, Illustrator (May 7, 2014). "Sergeant Stubby: America’s original dog of war fought bravely on the Western Front—then helped the nation forget the Great War’s terrible human toll". Slate.com. Retrieved July 13, 2014.  Reprinted in Kane, Gillian (May 24, 2014). "The story of Sergeant Stubby, WWI's most decorated dog". Stars & Stripes. Retrieved July 17, 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Stubby's Obituary: Stubby of A.E.F. Enters Valhalla". The New York Times (Connecticut Military History). April 4, 1926/July 16, 2003. Retrieved July 15, 2014.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  6. ^ "Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, July 09, 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 18". Evening Public Ledger. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Library of Congress. 1921-07-09. Retrieved 2013-12-06. 
  7. ^ Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 23. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  8. ^ a b "Dog Hero Again Honored". Roundup Record-Tribune & Winnett Times. October 28, 1921. p. 10. 
  9. ^ a b Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 112. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  10. ^ a b Martin, Major General Thaddeus (April 12, 2011). "Stubby the Military Dog". Connecticut Military department. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  11. ^ "A Connecticut Hero: Sgt. Stubby". Retrieved July 15, 20124.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  12. ^ *Richmond, Derek (November 4, 2003). From Mascot to Military, Stubby Left Pawprints on Hilltop and Beyond. The Hoya (Georgetown, Washington, D.C: Georgetown University). 
  13. ^ "Stubby the Military Dog". State of Connecticut. Connecticut Military Department. Retrieved 27 August 2014. 
  14. ^ "Brave Beasts". Legermuseum. July 18, 2008. Retrieved December 21, 2009. 
  15. ^ "Stubby". Snopes.com. November 11, 2006. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  16. ^ Bausum, Ann (May 13, 2014). Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I's Bravest Dog (Hardcover/audio). Washington D.C.: National Geographic Children's Books. p. 80. ISBN 1426314868. ISBN 978-1426314865. 
  17. ^ Glendinning, Richard; Glendinning, Sally; Amundsen, Richard (October 1978). Stubby, Brave Soldier Dog. Famous Animal Stories (Hardcover) (Champaign, Illinois: Garrard Pub. Co./Olympic Marketing Corp). p. 48. ISBN 0811648648. ISBN 978-0811648646. 
  18. ^ George, Isabel (March 8, 2012). The Most Decorated Dog In History: Sergeant Stubby (Print) (Kindle Edition ed.). Harper Collins. p. 304. ASIN B00739VSKW. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 112. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  • Bausum, Ann (May 13, 2014). Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I's Bravest Dog (Hardcover/audio). Washington D.C.: National Geographic Children's Books. p. 80. ISBN 1426314868. ISBN 978-1426314865. 
  • Garden, Joe; Pauls, Chris; Ginsburg, Janet (October 9, 2007). The Dangerous Book for Dogs: A Parody by Rex and Sparky (hardcover) (1st ed.). Villard. p. 208. ISBN 0345503708. ISBN 978-034550370. 
  • George, Isabel (March 8, 2012). The Most Decorated Dog In History: Sergeant Stubby (Print) (Kindle ed.). Harper Collins. p. 304. ASIN B00739VSKW. 
  • Glendinning, Richard; Glendinning, Sally; Amundsen, Richard (October 1978). Stubby, Brave Soldier Dog. Famous Animal Stories (Hardcover) (Champaign, Illinois: Garrard Pub. Co./Olympic Marketing Corp). p. 48. ISBN 0811648648. ISBN 978-0811648646. 
  • Goodavage, Maria. Soldier Dogs (Hardcover) (1 ed.). New York: Dutton Adult. p. 293. ASIN B00B9ZE3LM. ISBN 0525952780. 
  • Stone, Barry (March 1, 2012). The Diggers' Menagerie: Mates, Mascots and Marvels - True Stories of Animals Who Went to War. Australia: HarperCollins/ABC Books. p. 215. ASIN B0062GO7FK. }

External links[edit]